Class #2665

Integrating your Hands

35 min - Class


Learn how to integrate your hands into every exercise in this Reformer workout with Rachel Taylor Segel. She focuses on involving a body part that is usually forgotten so you can feel your whole body working fully. She even invites you to think about how the equipment feels in your hands and what they are doing during the transitions so you can stay connected throughout the class.
What You'll Need: Reformer w/Box

About This Video


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Hi and welcome. I'm Rachel Taylor Siegel from the [inaudible] center in Boulder, Colorado. I have my two wonderful clients here, Jen and Laurel, who are going to do an intermediate reformer class with me. And we're going to have a specific theme about, um, drawn from a tutorial that I did earlier about how to use the hands, how to involve them, how to integrate them and what you get when you do. So. Um, so there may be things, I won't say that I should say. Um, there may be some things that they do individually that they like and I'm not gonna comment on it because I'm going to be more interested in seeing what happens when I suggest, um, that they use their hands better, whether it's direct in atomical thought or uh, uh, an image, whatever it takes, um, to get them to what I hope is involve a part that is usually less involved and therefore end up with a body that is actually more involved fully, um, as a result of pulling in this part of us that we don't think about nearly as often as other parts of us. And see what we get. So hopefully on the film you'll be able to work out alongside of us at a nice tempo and flow. But you'll also be s you could also see and hear the different, um, ideas that maybe are unusual for you to do a reformer class with.

All right. So we'll see how it goes. Um, so ladies, if you would sit on stand on a diagonal two-year reformer, I'm going to ask them to do something with their arms so they can either take their hands and they can stack them, they can inter with them, they can put one hand on top of the other if they'd like. But I want the poems and the fingertips to be touching the other surface. And I want there to be, um, uh, a cognizance around the fact that they are touching and what I expect out of that cognizance, whether it, maybe that's the wrong word, but that awareness is that they're, they're gonna be more powerful in their upper bodies in general. It doesn't have to be a lot cause we're not doing hard work, but more. And that their belly will turn on better.

Almost every time they rethink that, whatever the thought will be about using their hands. K so with the hands as part of the full body workout, we will inhale us. We lower down to the mat to me in already lifts the knees, exhaling. And when you put your arms down, fill your fingers together and pressing against the fabric as you inhale, stretch and exhale, return. Good. And we'll do 10 just like normal and the normal springs are for, but I'm not gonna make a big deal about springs since we're filming. So, uh, don't worry too much about that. But as you move and breathing in and breathing out, yes, you're going to feel like your hands may be, are on a moving walkway at the airport and they're constantly moving slowly up towards your shoulders and maybe even beyond the shoulder pads.

And what I hope you to feel less time in change to bird on a purchase hailing and go inhale, stretch. What I hope you to feel from that. Um, fe, that image of the moving walkway is that you feel your shoulder, the back of your shoulder work, you feel a relief in your rib cage so you can breathe a bigger each time and you feel lengthier between your ribs in your hips so that your tummy tones may be better without you having to think about it. And so you inhale up the length of you and exhale down, just like just said, filling a bucket and empty and then stay home and go to your heels. Flex your souls way up and back as you inhale and exhale good. Bring your thumbs are all together with your fingers. Good. Try and get every cell of your palm as well as your fingers, even like the cracks in between your joints, against the fabric of the material and notice what it does to the rest of your arm all the way up to your shoulder.

And hopefully what we'll see on the film too is that when you have those hands down and valuable, that the whole arm becomes valuable all the way up to the shoulder. And keeps you from getting scrunched up into the shoulder blocks. Just a little bit. Other things do to exhale, come home and rest and go to the balls of your feet and parallel and inhale. Let the soles of the feet and then lower, lower, lower, and inhale up, up, up, and exhale down, down, down, up, up, up. Good. And as you're moving, keep the hand still pressing down as if you were preparing for the hundred, which comes next. And feeling that your whole arm is a unit is a, is a oneness.

Nothing talks louder than another part of it. And that as the whole thing is on the moving walkway, including the tips pads of your fingers, maybe you feel this lengthy thing that you're gonna use for the hundred. One more time, down and up, and the knees with control and very quietly lower your foot bar. Exhaling and then reach back. And as you take your wood handles, surround your wood handles with a gentle fist and kind of with kind of pull it through your elbows into your belly as you curl on to them.

And two, four, five x two, three, four, five little slower. We'll roll a five and nicely done. Good. So as you pump your arms, the whole point of the pumping is to move the blood. So if you get too tight, you can't move the blood through there. So let your palms ever so gently pull the wood handles up through your elbows into your shoulders and then curl your spine up and over into the wood handle. So it's like you're doing a hand stamp, so you're a gymnast on the rings or something like that. Last breath, hod exhale, bend the knees to the chest Benz, arms with control. Take both handles carefully in one hand and feel the difference.

Now as you use that strap into your belly to curl up, squeeze your knees together, even whether you teaser or not, change your springs for the short spine and lay your head down behind you. And as you move your straps through your handles and your breathing, pay attention to what the texture of what you're holding feels like and how much effort you might want to put into paying attention to it. To me. And as your feet come up over your face, uh Huh. And the souls of the feet, they kind of wrap around that strap. Exhaling down to your sits bunk. And here are your arms once again.

So now fingers together with thumbs and the palms are searching for the texture of the upholstery all the way up on the moving walkway almost takes you away from your feet as opposed to frogging. Inhale, take the body away from exhale up and over. Feel how your shoulders feel right now as your spine. Bend your knees to your ears and keep your shoulders right there as you roll down with your wrists. Elbows straight, fingers upon as best you can tummy in long and low as your heels come down. Let's do three more. Maybe inhale, stretch and exhale, curl and bend and feel how your body changes texture against your shoulders and your arms. Feel how your arms stay connected to your carriage, which go just a little bit faster if you would, which gives you a feeling of um, being part of the springs.

And so as you roll yourself down against the tug of your strap, feel your arms going up into your shoulders and opposition. Inhale, stretch your waist away from exhale, curl up and through your shoulder girdle, rural the spine long away from a shoulder girdle that's gently snuggled into the shoulder blocks. And last one, feel your palms press down and come up along your arms into your shoulders. Hopefully we'll feel more belly because of that. And as you roll down, your arms are continuing to go up towards your shoulder blocks. Just a hair, just a little cup your feet. And now lift your arms and take your handles for coordination. These together right away. And as you take these handles, let's make gentle fists and see how much of the wood you can keep on the whole palm. All right. Not In just the thumb webbing, but the whole palm. As you coordinate, inhale, extend, open and closed.

You need to work that hard. Exhale, Ben and Ben. So you're holding onto your wood handles as if they were lovely little snakes that are squiggly and sweet and you don't grip them and hurt them. Right? But you don't want them to leave you either. So you're holding on to them, you're keeping them with you gorgeous. And we'll do one with the criss crosses, right and take your hand and wrap around today. Laurel if you would, and pull it right on up into your nicely done.

Bring the heels together, Ben with the belly. Bend the arms, but keep the hands valuable. Take both handles in one hand. Now what's it feel like as you curl up and get your belly because of it. Go down to one spring and we're going to do the rowing's facing the foot bar so you screw. So turn around, face me. I know habits hard to break and so you gently press against and you bring your hands here and the wood handles are going to be parallel to the floor the whole time. Okay. And bring your elbows way back and then surround your woods so that every cell of your hands way up here, if you can do it, is touching. And then every cell of your hand is still involved.

Don't let it get heavy on that. Sutter the inside. Exhale and inhale and exhale. Good. And then bring them all the way up and start again. And as you continue, feel how the hand holding that strap doesn't need you to lock your elbows right? But it goes through your elbows, holding the wood just sufficiently efficiently so that it puts your blades down and lifts your sternum. Gorgeous. Flex your feet, hands by your hips, round your spine. Now when you take your handles towards your heels, how do you want to do that? Inhaling.

And when you hand stand on them, don't let bend your wrist back. Knuckles down if you would, Jen. Nicely. Deanne, better belly. Love it. And again, inhale throat up a little bit. Now stay down here and breathe. Two breaths. Keep your breaths moving the blood through you. Let go the extra effort. Straighten your wrist set. Laurel, if you would lift your elbows by your ears, just a hair, and then rolls, and then stretch forward and up.

And exhale. Third time with that extra breaths and inhale round over. Feel how your torso is toned and supported by your palms, wrist straight Laurel. If you can do it, pull the wood through your elbow, a s conduits and circle out to the side. Good. And then cross your ankles. Bring your hands behind you. Put some and finger together and all the way as low as you can and then feel your wood against as much of your palm as you can and see if you can bring your thinkers in front of your thumbs. Exhaling home a little bit faster so your elbows are wide, you're the fingers are in front of the wood and the whole wood touches your palm, right?

And that should give you a really rich shoulder and a feeling of torso last time up. Exhaling, open into hug a tree, change your legs. Kay. Now in this tagging of a tree, the wood handle is perpendicular to the floor and you're touching it from top to bottom. So as you inhale and you bring the whole would handle together and exhale. Nice big breath. So with this palm touching like so you should feel a very rich shoulder and upper abs.

So you should be able therefore to not feel restricted and breathe. Huge. Nice. Let's do one or two with the reverse breath. So inhale here. Exhale here. [inaudible] don't work too hard. Don't think too hard. Just breathe and hold the wood. Hold onto it.

Aha and rest. Nice. Hook your handles on your little posts there. And let's go and get the box for Swan. So as you pick the box up, how are you going to hold it with your hands actually with your palms and when you put it down and as you attend to it, feel how your palms are in effect attached to your forearm and vice all the way up through your shoulder. Change your springs and get a black pad for your thighs. Good.

Now when you put your hands down on the waist of the box and your toes apart on the wood or the foot bar, whichever you prefer, hold onto the waist of the box as if you could pick it up off the carriage. Pick it up. Now before you put your hips down, if you would see if you could step up onto and pick the box up. Fish with your palms so that you feel your belly nicely done. Turn in just a little bit and lay yourself out and over already toned because your hands picked it up, picked you up a little. Your hands are in the well to begin your inhaling, the hands go up and back. What are they saying? Aha.

Open and go through space with them. Come forth and exhale and belly is in. Good. What if you took your palms and you wrapped them around a ball so I know you can. You can do that and that's a one way and try it this way with your palms back. Inhale, wrap.

Have an imaginary ball in both hands like in here and how would you hold onto that ball? Now as you open and how would you hold onto that ball now as you come forward, come with me Jen. And how would you hold on as you did the second one heals up and back, knees bent, and then how would you hold on and does it give you your tummy by holding on as you exhale over. And one more time in with the air. What if you toss that ball in your palms behind you? Open the arms to the side. Exhaling. Good.

They over here and as you toss back, you're preparing for Highbridge. And so you want to feel nicely done. You want to feel that whole humorous bone rotate, exhale and step down from now when you put your hands on your box, how would you like to put your hands on the boxes? It helps you instead of it's a moment outside of Pilati. Do you know what I mean? Okay, so go down to one spring. We'll do pole strap in, tee and lay down with your shoulders to the very front edge, long, straight legs fee pointed, and take your very straight arms, palms facing the wood. Okay.

And without the some upon, but surrounding that, um, strap as if it were living and it's talking to you. It's whispering to your palm and it comes all the way up in to your body, turning on your belly as you inhale and you go, eyes, nose, chin, chest forward, do a hand stand on your hands with your sternum, higher than your hands. As you exhale, go forward. But stand on them anyway. Stand up on them. Nicely done. Stand up as you exhale and use less effort. Again, inhale, pull the arms in and up, handstand. And then as you exhale, hand stand as they come forward.

And even now and even now. And one more time in with the air. Good. Pull the arms up like you did in footwork when they were sliding on the foot on the moving walkway. As you exhale, keep the eyes up, chin up, chest up, keep the arms up, keep the sternum up and let the waist go forward and the spines stretch. Nicely done. And then take your hands out wide for t. All right, so you have a long straight line and your arms are, let's take the arms. Let's take your poems higher than your elbows come all the way to the end of your strap, right? And as you inhale, take your palms up such that you also pick your blades up. Beautiful Oral.

Yep. Don't palm stay facing down. And as you exhale, keep your palms facing down but higher than your elbows, which is probably not possible, but it's a good image in with the air, right? And then keep it that high. Exhale home. And one more time, a little faster in with the air. And think about how those pumps are holding right now. The straps and exhale, finish and put both handles in one hand and step off at a spring. Now when you add your spring, take hold of it on purpose and quietly and notice you pull your tummy in when you do so. And we'll do that again later and have seed for backstroke and teaser inhaling.

And then exhale, curl in and make your little fingers touch each other. Surround the wood as we have been with your whole palm above your head and see if you can get your little finger knuckles touching so that you work your shoulder and therefore your upper abs. Inhale everything up and then open and then forward and then hold and expel the air home again. Inhale up and open and forward. Oh Hey, all good. One more and we'll reverse that. Now, not elbows but little bunnies. So if you would handle right, we've verse it please our little bunnies. You lost your left one, like how would you hold on to that?

Would you got to hold it even now? Nice Laurel [inaudible] with the air and hopefully what you see in the film is this full body gesture. Now take both handles and the other hand and make use of it to pull your belly, which pulls your Bellion. Now while you're here, when you take pick it up your spring and lower it, make no noise and feel your belly control you around to the center. Scooch back just a little nice girls, long straight legs together and pointed. Now what are your hands doing right now?

And are they the portal? Are they the doorway for the straps to go through your elbow, through your whole shoulder, and hit your abs in with the air? Use the wood handle to lift your abs and exhale circle right. The higher the hand, the lengthier the spine. So get your hands high, offered to the gods one more time and stay up.

Stay up as you roll down. Keep them up there parallel to the ceiling and roll the spine down parallel to the ceiling. Don't go slow, but kept parallel to the ceiling. Parallel to the parallel to that. Good job. And again, one more time. Inhale and you can reverse them. Exhale, right? Don't let them get too far behind you so that they keep your belly working nice.

Right? So as you lift that wood, I want you to feel your torso [inaudible] and as you roll down, keep your hands high, just a little extra long. So that gives you support breathing so that you can come down with control. Take both handles in one hand, curl up and step off. What's your handle hand doing for you at that moment? Go ahead and let's see. Let's hook the, put your handles on the post and take away your box.

And let's do long stretches. So you're gonna lift your head rest and put a pad on your head rest. And then when you step on, the first thing you do is you put one hand upon, how does that hand set you up? How could it set you up for long stretch? Are you going to lean on it or are you going to break it your wrist?

Or are you going to surround it and make valuable, you know, like, think, think a little bit more differently. Maybe one hand ball of the foot, other hand, ball of the foot. So how are your hands now around those bars and what do they do to you? Coming up into your shoulders is one spring. Okay for you, Jen, you another one as you inhale out and exhale home. Good. So keep your shoulders over your hands this time, long as you can and take your souls and your calves and your shins, your thighs, and your hips and your belly and your spine.

Go Spine and exhale. Can you go further and work less hard? Nice. So as you go back one more time with your shoulders, staying over your hands. Take your breath, let your breath fill up. Yeah, go. Let your breath fill up. Exhale home.

Gently lower your knees. Nicely done. And then flex your feet against and come forth into Swan. Okay. But reach your femurs back just a little and pick the foot bar up. Like what would it be like to pick the foot bar up? Yes.

As you inhale back and exhale sternum up. And as you exhale back, pom the bar, gorgeous. And then open your mouth on your exhale and listen. One more time. Smooth, sequential, hot, fabulous. Now keep your hands right where they are and move around them. Uh, as you curl your head in, right. And you come through your spine to lift and press away from holding the little bunnies with your hamstrings and feet. And then exhale forward and keep your ears near your elbows, near your pounds to turn your tongue neon.

And again in with the air. Work less hard. Ladies. That's it, right? And breeze even there. All right. Beautiful. That's it. One more s out in forward curl already. [inaudible] and then keep the belly that high because of your hands and arms, but lower your heels and lift your toes for elephant. Good shoulders are broad supported by an even in this position.

You know you could do it. You could pick the foot bar up. Where would you have to be? Nicely done as you press heels back and forth and forth. Exhale and in heels down all the time. Pinch me hard that a girl, but don't lock it. Right.

So pick the foot bar up as you pinch me Amman. Nice. Last one. And step to the floor. Beautiful. Well done. Okay. Semick massage. Bring Your Bar pad forward. Add Springs if you want to. Okay, so, so let's get on like we did before. Not that this is the rule, but that it's giving us a chance to play once again.

So there should be some feeling of lifting and then being able to breathe. Beautiful up into the body, which turns on the Tummy, which lifts the knees, which places the feet exhaling. Good. So get your feet up there on top. Now take your poems and push back with your palm, the carriage out from under your Tush and lower lift. Exhale home, push back. Right. And feel it. Go all the way up to the back of your shoulder. In fact, push back and up today. Yes. And round your spine.

Forward inside the back and upness. Nicely done. Nice. And then go a little faster and work less hard. Yep. Push back first. Nice one more so that it rounds your spine. And then if you want to lose a spring and bring your arms back and when you put your hands upon the shoulder blocks, pick them up.

Pick them up off the sh to move Elko, lower lift. Exhale home pong them up. What if they were rooted and you could, you were going to transplant them somewhere else and you're picking them up gently, right? And in so doing it tones your tummy and it gives you more space to breathe in, in picking up. It doesn't necessarily soften your elbows, it lifts your girdle off your cage so that you can inhale. Gorgeous. Last one.

And then keep this lovely feeling as you bring your arms forward. Obas buy yours. Go right away. Inhale, exhale home. Good care. Less about your knees, more about your hands. So your hands out there. What can they do to en to be part of the rest of you?

Can you draw your fingers into your palms instead of reaching them out? Can you put your shoulders forward on your fingertips? Bring them down last time for the twisting. Inhale and exhale, center and inhale. Good. Keep the souls up as if lifting the foot bar.

Nice you to inhale. Good. Let's go around to the right. Stay there. Put your right hand on the shoulder block. Pick it up with your right hand, not your shoulder, but the block. And put your left hand on your Shin. Breathe three more breasts and keep twisting.

Now what are your hands doing for you? Now? Does there have to be tension? No. Can there be more twists like in your organs? Excellent. Use your belly to lift your arms. Exhale, come home and go left. Enjoy this extra time to continue moving with your breath, but to feel right. What, how can it get through, into and behind your sternum, in front of your blades, into your spine? No. Use your belly to lift your hands and exhale home. Bring your feet to the wood.

Make gentle fists and do like a two inch in diameter, a little circle. Inhale for a couple and exhale for a couple and reverse it. Pierce through your pox behind into the back of your shoulder and pick your girdle up, not your back. Use your arms to pick your girl up. Lift more to bring your elbows by your ears to twist as you did and put your feet on the floor. Nicely done. Heck, say I'll stand up. Okay, I'll take it. Okay. That was lovely. Let's do, um, let's put the black straps on and do the long spy massage.

So as you're moving and breathing, okay, changing the straps. Think about how it's really easy to bend forward and round your back. And what if your hands were picking up the straps and the handles to your body? What if they're bringing it to you? [inaudible] and so whenever you change and you put it down, keep the relationship. Yes. Nice Jen, between you and the strap.

Don't let your shoulders, uh, disengage off your back. Feel feely how your belly turns off when you do that. And lay down the soon as you can tell me in as you bend your knees and bring your feet over your face, exhaling and bring your souls on. And then straighten your legs up on a diagonal over your face. And here you are with footwork. Okay. And Jan, will you put your metal stuff on the outside there so it doesn't, yeah.

And so when your palms are down on the fabric better and better throughout the workout, you don't have to push hard. It's almost like, like the carriage is gonna pull them back there and that lengthens your ribs and maybe you would like it to about there. Huh? And that as it's, so as this comes back this way, almost despite you, this softens lifts and you get to breeze circumference. Shirley Lee. Okay. And then as you exhale, you're going to roll right on up and feel where your shoulders are now. And the carriage comes home mish and you open shoulder width and you lift your souls. But you feel your shoulder stay back there and you keep moving. Inhale as you rolled down, breathe and together. Exhale. And if I'm telling you differently than you usually do, then go ahead and do it. How you usually do it and open.

And where are your shoulders now and where are your wrists and your palms, right? So if your palms, every cell of which are down, even your little fingers and your wrists are not rolling to the outside, just like a foot would not, then I'm hoping that you'll feel that arm keep moving and breathing knife and returning and reverse it at some point and goal just a little bit faster. Work less hard and breathe more. So you're standing on these arms [inaudible] yeah, whichever you like Jen, but feel your arms as if that was the most important thing. Go a little faster, Jen with your breath so you never stop breathing. Sorry Laura, I hadn't met. And right s yeah, keep moving.

So the muscles are continuing to work even though they change. They're always toned, right? And particularly your arms to your shoulders. Nicely done. Last one. Good. Bring your legs together and drop your straps off in the well behind you.

[inaudible] and then tell me in rules you down and steps you to the floor. That's all right. You did right. And lift your head rest and a foot bar for knee stretches. So as you're getting on to do knee stretches, how will you place your first and second hand? How will you so that it supports and lifts you.

What if you're telling me we're already told not because you turned it on purposefully, but because of how you address the bar. Heels and knees. Press back. Inhaling. Exhale, home and home. Squeeze your inner thighs a little bit together, Laurel. Nicely done. Now feel like at any moment I could order you to pick the foot bar up and you would do it. Feel like at any moment I could order you. You would do it.

Could you do it now? Yeah. Where would you have to be? Nice last one. And then change your spine. Eyes up, Chin up, chest up, tail up. Good. And as your belly lengthens with the heel and knee back. [inaudible] but you come all the way home each time. Could you pick the foot bar up now? Where would you be in your tour?

So if you could, because you could meet could if you wanted to knife and exhale home, Andy Enough and step down. Good ad your springs for running good. And when you put your arms down, you're on that moving walkway. Unless it doesn't serve you, does it still feel like a valuable image? Could you picture your arms like continuing on through the shoulder blocks and picking your collarbone up as your feet? Push you away and you bend and then change and you have 50 50 of your weight on both legs constantly, especially then betony but your arms are continuing to go beyond the shoulder blocks in your imagination so that as you inhale and exhale, your waist is getting longer. So the way the springs pull apart and come together, that's how texturized your torso muscles can be as the inner palm, as well as the outer palm, right, are on the [inaudible].

And so you feel the whole posterior arm back of the arm against the fabric, up into the back of your shoulder, lifting you and toning your belly. Straighten both legs, gently come home, exhaling, bottom lift and lift the pelvis up and press out and in. Nice. So as you press out in, in, and you're picturing your arms, your hands pushing down into and may be almost behind you, like you could curl yourself forward into a [inaudible]. I don't know the rowing's right with your arms behind you. Yes. Last time. Hot.

Exhale home and roll down, but keep the arms and gives you hopefully a lengthier spine and more belly. Good. Bring your feet together to me in and step off. Nicely done, my friends. Good job. Yay.

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1 person likes this.
Nice work, thank you. Good morning from Slovakia. Viera
1 person likes this.
Great class Rachel. Love this attention to the outer extremities to bring us closer to our center.
1 person likes this.
Rachel you ARE a master, always touching several layers simultaneously. Thank you.
I am so glad to inspire greater teaching and new understanding! What a wonderful job💕Rachel.
Thank you!
1 person likes this.
It was a great image to think a little more about the hands, it even felt that the excercises were easier to do:)
1 person likes this.
I like the cue to think about lifting the bar and shoulder blocks. The latter made my stomach massage so much easier. Ditto the cue to lift the shoulder girdle. Thank you!
John B
1 person likes this.
I love how much this engaged the mind too.
Amazing. I am watching this while I am resting with Omicron and can't wait to try this! I love the " lift up the bar"  I bet this will change the heavy downward feeling in the wrists... for me and well as my clients.

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